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Advice needed ...will this hinder me from finding employment as an EMT/Paramedic?

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  • Advice needed ...will this hinder me from finding employment as an EMT/Paramedic?

    First of all hello! My name is Kristy and I am potentially pursuing a degree is para-medicine. My question is will this hinder me from obtaining employment in the EMT/Paramedic field.... see below

    I have been attending college in the healthcare field for a few years now. I have a really great niche for it and have always had a 4.0 throughout college. I recently had a huge change of heart and truly want to be able to make a difference in others' lives and hopefully set a good example for my own children as well. I would be nothing but honored to be a part of my communities Ambulance services and be able to save lives everyday.

    I however in march of 2009 in MN received a traffic violation. One that I was not aware would or could affect my future employment and career goals. I honestly did not know the ramifications of the ticket nor did I know even what it meant other than the officer telling me it was a easy payable fine. so I just paid the fine to avoid any court dates. Had i known what it meant, yes i would have defended myself to be completely honest.

    I was pulled over for going over the fog line a little and for driving too near behind a vehicle in front of me whom was in the fast lane and about 15 mph under the spped limit. It was an exhausting night and apparently i swerved a bit over the fog line for a split second and was too close to the car ahead of me. I did not cause any car accidents and was not near causing one. I'm sure my thoughts at the time were that I was tired and wanted to get home as i was only a couple miles away after driving all day. I definitely own up to the fact i should not have been tail gating so close ( i was likely a couple car lengths in distance)and to the fact that I did go over the fog line real quick whilst distracted from my son in the car at the time. I am sure the officer may have felt it could have been a drunk driver and I don't blame her for that at all as keeping our highways safe is really important and it was late at night. However, as i found out this weekend i do not feel I was rightly accused of careless driving per se.... perhaps a different offense but nothing as serious as careless driving IMO. Now that i know that it is a serious traffic offense, it is too late now to do anything about it but to be careful driving and be sure not to get into a situation like that ever. I will always be honest that I do have this on my record and will state that it was a petty misdemeanor and not drug or alcohol related as usually this type of traffic violation is very broad and usually involves people trying to race each other carelessly down the roads/hwy's, driving recklessly due to being under the influence or falling asleep at the wheel etc etc.

    The officer did put it as a "petty misdemeanor" careless driving.Its unusual to receive a careless driving here as petty misdemeanor ( usually a misdemeanor at the least) as I have been told but it does look bad for the simple fact that usually this offense I believe should be given to those that are driving erratic etc. I had my own son in the car and in no way would ever want to put him in harms way or anyone else on the road for that matter intentionally. It is also not alcohol or drug related. I do not even drink let alone anything else. I don't want others to feel like I am not owning up to my responsibilities and making excuses either. However, has anyone ever been accused of something that was a little extreme?

    Will this ticket however prevent me from being hired as a Paramedic or EMT? I don't have any other traffic violations and definitely no criminal offenses.

    I don't want my dreams of serving my community and helping people in need to go down the drain due to this one ticket. I wish i could take that night back but i can't. please give me your best advice. It was a 4 point ticket on my driving record. Not knowing the ramifications of the charge really has cost me a lot of stress here. It will not apparently be eligible for removal from my record from the DMV until i am 32 years old and I just can not hold off on college until then. I have five young children to support and really want to be able to be a Paramedic/EMT. any help would be appreciated.

    thanks so much

  • #2
    Should not

    Unless there is something in your state or for the agency you are applying to that states this offense is a deal breaker

    If you look at the requirements of dome of the places around you they sometime state no tickets or a certain amount within the past so many years


    • #3
      Shouldn't be a big deal. I am a bit confused about the charge you had. The penalties you describe are a bit much for the offense as you describe, but the charge fits. Even though it is a misdemeanor, it would be viewed here as just a traffic violation. When I went through hiring process, I was honest about my record (they're gonna find out anyway). I was told that not only was it not a problem, I have a relatively clean record. Some traffic violations are almost to be expected. A lot of drivers never get a ticket or an accident, but it is part of life. It depends upon where you apply for a job later. It also may depend upon what state you live in, or plan to relocate to in the future.

      Here in PA, we have "careless driving" and the more serious "reckless driving". I'm not sure the exact differences, but it is my impression that reckless implies a more willful form. The incident as you described would likely be the more benign "careless".

      State of DE has (had?) three levels, they have "inattentive driving" (bad) in addition to careless (worse) and reckless (worst). Long story short, I was once charged with "careless" in DE that I plead down to "inattentive". PA and DE have reciprocity, so points for "careless" would have transferred. But, since PA doesn't have "inattentive", there was no comparable charge to reciprocate or equate the charge. IIRC, mine was a points-less offense in DE, but if it had been, I would have no points on my PA record because there is no equivalent.
      Opinions expressed are mine alone, and do not necessarily reflect those of the Philadelphia Fire Department and/or IAFF Local 22.


      • #4
        Don't worry about it. It should not matter. If you are asked about it try not to be so melodramatic about it and you will just fine. Good Luck.
        Stay Safe

        “Guys if you get hurt, we’ll help you. If you get sick we’ll treat you. If you want to bitch and moan, then all I can tell you is to flick the sand out of your slit, suck it up or get the hell out!”
        - Capt. Marc Cox CFD

        Nothing in life is so exhilarating as to be shot at without result.


        • #5

          thank you so much. Truly helps me decide my career. Me melodramatic...nah!? J/k! I think the husband would fully agree!


          • #6

            My name is Bill Hicks and I am in my 18th year in the fire service, and currently serve as a fire chief. I am also a doctoral candidate at Eastern Kentucky University and my dissertation topic involves investigating the current status of firefighter reciprocity among the 50 states. I am seeking members of the fire service who may have experience in moving from state to state and seeking reciprocity, or recognition of certification issued by your old state, in a new state. Also, if you came from the military and sought reciprocity for DOD certificates, I would like to hear from you as well. If you have not experienced this, please forward the link below to anyone who you may know that has done this.

            For those that have such experiences, I am humbly asking you to give 5 minutes of your time to answer a short series of question found at the link below on your experiences with seeking reciprocity, or recognition when you moved from one state to another, regardless of being paid or volunteer members in your department.

            Also at the end of the survey you will have a space to share any experiences you may have had when dealing with reciprocity of fire service certifications in your department and with your state. Also feel free to forward this to any fire service member(s) who you feel would have something to say on the topic.

            Your anonymity is protected throughout the process. Just click or copy the link below to begin.


            Also, if you would like to share your experiences with me in more depth after taking part in the survey, please leave your email in the beginning of the comments section at the end of the survey.


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